In his chapter regarding how we are to deal with defects we note in others (1,16), Kempis devotes the last section to a proper attitude toward others. So does James, who closes out the first chapter of his letter (1:19-27) with what at least one commentator calls an outline of the entire epistle: “everyone should be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger.”
What is to be our approach to others? Kempis tells us in the headline. How do we do this well? James says that we are to “bridle” our tongues. What sort of example do we give as Christians if we do not listen attentively, then, using the power of speech wisely, in a limited way, and always to support, comfort, assist, or instruct. Such words bring love and truth — something we all need.